Thursday, January 31, 2013


" As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives."
-Henry David Thoreau
Oh, did i previously mention that I'd be featuring my man Henry David quite frequently?  Well, i will be, and that's simply because he's said some thangs that have drastically changed the way I think.  I've read a lot of things that have affected my thinking, but none in the way this man has.
I'm guilty of thinking negatively from time to's just the way my brain functions.  But i do this today nowhere near as much as i used to.  I've had to abide by what he's suggesting in this quote.  Its been a struggle at times, but i know that i can turn around the way I'm thinking in the drop of a dime.  Granted, it never works that way, there is way more footwork to it than that.  I won't bore you with those details.  But i can tell you that the ways in which I've had to work in order to keep my mind on the right path has been grueling at times.  Its easier to pay attention to my thoughts now than it ever was before, and once you can become actively aware of your thoughts you can own them in a way that's really quite empowering. 
Its 16° outside and I'm preparing to make my trek into work.  No matter how much i complain about the weather, hot our cold, i love walking.  I do a lot of walking at work and i can't believe i get paid to do it.  My walk from the parking lot to my job is almost a mile in itself one way.  As cold as it is, once my legs start moving my brain starts working.  It's a beautiful thing.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

You Want To Do What?

There are two things I've had in mind that I've wanted to do in life for quite a while now and I'm thinking it might be time to start looking at those things more realistically.  I'm definitely not getting younger and the only moment we've really got is this one so why not take advantage of it and at least begin the work toward doing them?  I know of only one way that things happen, and its usually all about putting one foot in front of the other, making things happen.  I've been stuck in a rut with some things and it's time that I break out of it and change things.  A person can sit for a while and become stagnant but when I do it I get restless pretty quickly.  It's a beautiful thang to be empowered enough to just up and change things in life on a whim.  I've done it before and I can do it again.  Making drastic changes in life is what I'm good at when I put my mind to it.

So, the first of these two things is an adventure, probably the biggest one my life will see.  Now, the first time I brought this idea up it didn't really go over well with anyone, but it's all good.  I hadn't intended for it to happen at that time, it was just an idea, a spark necessary to light a fire.  And now here I am, 4 years older doing the same shit I don't want to be doing.  So, what is it that I do want to do?  Why, walk from one end of the country to the other!  What else?   It's a wild idea, I know.  But there are things about me that people just don't get sometimes.  I enjoy walking.  It allows me time to think and figure things out, and get to know myself.  You know, I think most people cannot be alone with themselves, quietly, for that long and it's just an insane idea.  I don't have anything mapped out, and I haven't really looked into doing it yet, but I do intend to do it.  Why do I bring it up now?  Because, I couldn't walk from here to the next town in the state I'm in.  My mind nor my body would be prepared for it right now.  I intend to change that.  I shall keep you updated here on my progress and what's going on.  I've put it out there in black and white and there's no ignoring it now.

The second thing I've been wanting to do forever and a day, is to write a book.  Something is telling me that these two ideas are related in every way.  Would my journey across the United States be book worthy?  I think I'm creative enough to make it so.  We'll just have to see I suppose.  This is something I've already begun to work on.  This blog here was my motivation to begin writing once again and to potentially do something with it.  Granted, my daily ramblings are only fit for this blog but we'll just call it an exercise.  I'm preparing myself for the writing that will actually matter.  It may not be my once in a lifetime shot at writing a book but I'm going to treat it as such.  And with that I'll continue writing.

There, I've put it out there.  I think there's no turning back once I've hit the publish button.  Sure, I suppose I could attempt to ignore it but it would bother me until I did something about it so I just side step that altogether.  It really is amazing what a person can do when they put their mind to it, and I intend to show people that.  Maybe they'll follow along.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Swimming In A Black Hole

The universe is such a massive thing that i don't even know of there's a human mind out there that can actually grasp it.  I mean, we have words to describe what we think might paint a similar picture for the sake of understanding, but i don't think we truly comprehend the vastness we call the universe.  We have a rough number we've given as an age for it which in turn can tell us mathematically where the universe ends.  But it's just numbers.  Can you actually wrap your mind around it?  If we were even able to get there, for all of our knowledge and understanding, we still don't really know what we'll see at the edge of life.  Perhaps we'll see a mirror image of our universe with inverted colors...the stars are black and apparent "empty space" is white.  The actual amount of space between here and there is full of life.  I feel that even the stuff we don't see that holds it all together breathes in its own way.  The probabilities and possibilities are endless.
Now, I'm not some ancient alien conspiracy freak or anything, but there has got to be some sort of intelligent life form out there somewhere.  I think it's probably more likely that there is than there isn't.  I can't prove it, of course.  On a crisp, dark night when i can see as deep as my eyes will let me, i can't help but to think that we're not alone.  Which brings me to a question...if there does turn out to be more intelligent life out there, what will the religious folk say then?  I had a conversation at work today with a gentleman who is a hardcore Christain.  He's a really good dude, although i admit to thinking he's a bit misguided at times.  So he tells me today that it's not possible that more life exists because we are the only children of God.  What am i to say to that?  No amount of logic or reasoning is going to get through this wall of God he has built up around him.  I don't say this to talk about my beliefs on God, that would take a mini-series of posts to explain that.  I may actually do that at some point, just not now. 
So, what happens to the idea of God and us being chosen people if something else comes into play here?  Does that belief just fade away?  And if they were wrong about that, what else were they wrong about?  It brings up a lot of questions.  I've got my answers to them, do you?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Riding The Fence

I admit it, I'm a fence rider.  I am indifferent about a lot of things.  Sometimes it irritates people and they just can't understand how it is that i don't care to involve myself in a lot if things.  My indifference isn't a lack of caring, it is my conscious choice to let some things go and not worry about them.  If i formulated an opinion on everything and stood my ground with a pitbull like tenacity it seems to me that i would be exactly all those things i don't want to be.  Pride can be a vicious thing.  When one is opinionated they spend countless hours having to defend their positions.  How much energy is lost in having to be right all the time?  I would much rather conserve my "brain space" for things more constructive. 

I don't get into debates with people for the very same reason.  I love talking, and believe that conversation is a lost art, but having to prove myself right seems like an uphill battle.  I want to know your thoughts and ideas, and i want to share mine, but a debate, to me, isn't to combine ideas and share thoughts in order to raise the awareness of all involved.  Nor is it conducive to really helping people understand things.  Don't get me wrong, having an opinion about some things is quite practical in making it through life.  It is my opinion that nobody in this world should go hungry, but it isn't controversial and I'd imagine most people would agree.  There's really no debate to be had.

I am guilty of being an opinionated S.O.B.  I'm not preaching here so much as reminding myself.  I used to be very vocal about my opinions.  It wasn't until i became more aware of myself and how certain situations affect me that i realized i wouldn't shut my mouth long enough to hear anything. I began to take notice of how it affected me physically and it was almost like fight or flight mode, only i was mainly in fight mode.  Heart beats faster, palms become sweaty...and i strive to be right instead of calm.  It is quite hard to be open-minded when having stern opinions.  Today i have ideas, rather than opinions, which I'd like to continue sharing with you.  And hopefully along the way you'll share your ideas with me.  I'm here to learn how to be human which means i don't have to be right, only alive.  So why not take the easier, less traveled road?  I am a bit of a heathen, going against the grain and my philosophical ideas make my metaphorical heart beat.  It's how i know I'm still kicking.

Do you have ideas?

Saturday, January 26, 2013


In case you haven't noticed, i changed the name of the blog.  When i started it i had the intention of changing it once i had something suitable.  So, here it is...officially.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Philosophical Quote Of The Day

I think we ought always to entertain our opinions with some measure of doubt. I shouldn't wish people dogmatically to believe any philosophy, not even mine.
-Bertrand Russell
This is a philosophy i live by.  I've done my own real life research and i find that i try to entertain my own opinions with some measure of a doubt as well.  It's very easy to become closed-minded and get caught up in having the answers all the time.  The fact of the matter is, i form opinions very little on a lot of things.  We all live by our own philosophies whether we know it or not.  Some choose to own it or it owns them.  I think that being open-minded is the basis of owning and living you're own philosophy.  It's a beautiful thing accepting that i don't have all the answers, nor do i have to.  I've found some peace in that.
How do you approach your philosophies in life?  I think it's a good question not enough people ask themselves.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

3 a.m.

Its been a while since I've really written anything at 3 in the a.m.  My head feels kind of inebriated from a lack of sleep, too much coffee and not eating right.  This is my life.  It is very easy to get caught up in identifying myself with what it is that i do to support a family, when all it really is is a way to support my family.  This is not where i want to spend the rest of my life, and operating a crane is not what i want to do forever.  I'm like a kid in the sense that i don't know what i want to do when i grow up.  I haven't known since the dreams of a 15 year old boy had been realized to be impossible.  I can't set my sights on anything ever since.

I haven't shaved in almost 5 months, and have needed a haircut for about two.  I think my appearance it's starting to blend in with its surroundings.  And yes, i am becoming a "beard stroker" as i become lost in thought.  Believe it or not, its almost as conducive to good thinking as walking, therapeutic even.  If nothing else it keeps the cold off my face this time of year.

I write to find a way through my thoughts, and perhaps i can write to find my way through life.  I don't want to be stuck here wasting away while my mind wants to roam a mountain a thousand miles away.  I'm not sure for how much longer i can tolerate having a separated mind, body and soul.  I feel a change on the horizon and i hope they understand. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A truly good book teaches me better than to read it. I must soon lay it down, and commence living on its hint. What I began by reading, I must finish by acting.
-Henry David Thoreau

You know, I recently read through my favorite book, "Walden."  I've read it a handful of times and I never fail to find something new, something I didn't notice the first time.  There have been dozens of times that I just pick up this book, flip to a page and see what I come up with.  I mean, every other sentence in this book is quote worthy.  This particular quote caught my attention the other day and its been stuck in my head ever since.  Worthy of sharing it here and my thoughts on it.

I have read so many books with the intention of finding in it something that will give me a better understanding of life, thus a better understanding of myself in it.  I read, searching to find out what others have found in their lives and how the world turned for them.  It's always about knowledge and to understand something from a perspective not my own.  There comes a point, however, where I was filled with all kinds of knowledge that was sitting, stagnant.  Like anything else, ideas get old and stale when not using them.  For how long can you continue to take in ideas and not try them on for size?  Some of them fit, and a lot don't.  I've managed to let ideas rise up in me and fall to the wayside without any regret.  I don't speak of it to boost my ego, rather to keep it in check.  Just when I think I know it all I can pick up a book and read something the complete opposite of my own line of thinking and find that I had been wrong.  If nothing else I have learned to keep an open mind and not discriminate against the ideas of another.  The moment that happens is the same moment I stop learning or moving forward.  And let me tell you, that does happen.

I read everything with the intent of gaining something.  I don't care if you're an award winning author or some Joe blogger such as myself.  I suppose I write with the intention of giving back a bit of what I've been given through the written word of people.  It's a beautiful thing when you think about it.  I can't put a price on what I know.  And even though it's not much, I do know something.  We all know something which can be the spark to light the fire up under somebody.  You never know.

What kind of thoughts does that quote stir inside you?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Knowing Self

I have a theory, yea I've had a few over the years, that states that if people were to mind their own lives first and foremost all other things would fall into place.  I think humanity is struggling right now.  We worry about all kinds of things that are going on outside our control and completely neglect to ever really get to know ourselves.  How important is that really, to get to know oneself?  I'm of the mind that it should be of the utmost importance to all people living in this world.  It's not likely going to happen but I am beginning to see a change in the things that people believe.  I once saw myself as a lone wolf out there, as the type of person paying very close attention to my thoughts and caring less about the things going on around me.  Or to stray away from traditional ideas of things that are of a spiritual nature.  To me, all of these things are intertwined and always have been.  I'm a human being just trying to make sense of my being in this world and not of this world.

How terribly hard it is to sit in a quiet room and do nothing!  We are constantly on the go with a hundred things to stimulate us at any given time.  Under conditions like these it is very hard not to let your mind wander away from you and get lost in all of those things around you.  There is this idea that to be still and do nothing is lazy.  Perhaps a bit of laziness is what this world needs to remedy some of it's societal problems.  There are places in this world where people who just sit, and meditate on truly knowing and understanding themselves, are revered.  Not so in the west.  We identify ourselves with all of the things that we do when we don't really know ourselves from Adam.  I am not the accumulation of all the things I've done, although experience certainly is important in life, and I am finding that the more I strip away from self the more I begin to understand.  

Everything I do, whether I am aware of it or not, is leading me to one end.....knowing myself the best I can.  That end will, in fact, come one day, but the journey from here to there is all I'm really concerned with.  I can be on top of the world, but it would do no good if I haven't seen the pits of hell, and this is life.  It goes up and down and it's constantly evolving.  Taking the good with the bad is something I am starting to appreciate more and more the older I get.  Times get rough, but I kind of see those as growth spurts.  The inevitable "this too shall pass" does come, and times do get better, and one can sit with themselves quietly because they know it all elevated their awareness. 

I know that I've gone off in a couple different directions, but as I said before this "knowing thy self" is all encompassing and it's hard to focus on any one thing.  I've come to a realization, I am 3 decades old, damn near half of my life behind me.  That's not a scary thing, it's life. It is what it is.  I think that my hiatus from writing was a moment of growth.  During that time I got to know a little more about myself.  I used to write and ask questions and I thought I was searching for answers when the only real answers I needed were inside me all along.  I just couldn't get quiet enough to hear it, my mind was constantly rolling.  I think during that dry spell I didn't need to write.  I needed to find my answers to those questions.  And now, at the young age of 31, I have answers and I want to share that with people. And here I am, writing again.   Not to say that I'm done growing as a person because we all know that never stops.  But I've come to a place where if I don't share some of what I've got I won't have any more room to grow.  Time to start a new phase in life and see where it takes me.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

looking back

looking back over the last 10 years of my life i see a me that has changed gradually over time to become who i am today.  sometimes i look in the mirror and i don't recognize myself.  have you ever looked deep enough into your own depleted eyes that you quickly lose sight of what you're looking for?  staring for so long, wanting some kind of answer, that you forget who you are?  i wouldn't say i lose myself, but sense of self.  i search my own eyes for answers these days, more and more.  i can't say exactly what it is i'm looking for, but i am looking nonetheless.

there was a time when i asked more questions than i think i was able to handle.   i wanted to know god, or if there was a god.  the further i grew away from those ideas more peace i had, and the less questions i asked.  i searched in many places for those answers....books, internet, drugs, self, etc.  not necessarily in that order.  many places looked, still no answers, and no better places to look.  i've come to a conclusion....we are not to have answers to these questions.  at least for now we don't need to know.  

in light of these realizations the questioning began to slow.  i no longer had questions so i no longer needed answers.  its been a gift and a curse all at the same time.  i used to say the same thing about my questioning mind.  i can't say that i don't still wonder about life, because i do.  i've just found other things to look at such as the stars.  i can gaze upon the stars and never ask a single question.  the beauty and magnificence that drapes the night sky  doesn't demand complete understanding, although it does drive people to it.  it stands alone, no words needed.  or to look up at a snowcapped mountain it needs no explanation.  it's rooted in the ground and stuck in the sky at the same time.  and these things ARE life.  they exist without a single answer and they're quite powerful.

the only life i know is the life i see through my own eyes, and i spend a lot of time trying to express that.  sometimes my best thoughts can't be captured, they go as quick as they came.  but at night when i close my eyes and think of the stars i know that i'm doing alright.  everything seems to make sense.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

They Come And Go

Today I hear that my mothers father died.  I guess you could say my grandfather, but this is a man that I've only seen once in my lifetime, and I think I was somewhere around the age of 6.  You know, I don't know anything about him.  I'm not mad at him for not being around because I don't really know why he wasn't.  All I know is that he wasn't around for my mother either and that's what makes me mad.  How does a man not take care of his children?  I don't think I'll ever be able to understand that one, no matter how it's explained.  All I know is that the man lived, a long time I might add, and he died.  Don't know what he did in between.

The very same day I find out about this I am to go with my wife and kids to her uncles house.  You see, this family, for whatever reason, went like 20 years without speaking to or seeing one another.  I don't understand how this happens when these are the people you grew up with.  Either way, I do have to say the I respect them all for actually trying to become closer by getting together like this.  We did this once before, two years ago.  You know, I don't know if it'll ever be a more frequent thing or not, but I give them credit for trying.  It's uncomfortable and you can feel it in the air, and for all of these people to stand fast and deal with it is a pretty cool thing.  Whatever their differences are they've been able to let go of them long enough for their kids, in their 20's and 30's, to get to know each other.  And you know, I hope for their sake that they never have to bring up those differences so that they can work it out.

I come from a family that's pretty much dysfunctional.  My moms side is pretty much non existent, and I'm relatively close to those on my dads side.  I've been fortunate enough to have at least a few stable people around me.  You take the people on my moms side and put them together there's probably going to be a fight or some huge verbal blow out...happens every time.  Those people, for whatever reason, will never be able to have any kind of working relationship.  It's just not going to happen.  And it's all good, people do what they do.

As for myself, I get in where I fit least I try.  It wasn't all that long ago that my wife's parents didn't even really want me around much less have me as any part of their family.  I have to admit though, that they have come around quite a bit.  I do feel welcomed there now and it does feel good.  I'm not used to that. Even when I'm with the family that I am close to I never really feel comfortable, or at ease.  It's always as if there is some sort of unfulfilled expectation from them.  I just don't fit in.  My wife's family, on the other hand has no expectations of me and I can just be. So I do appreciate it.  It's not as if any of them will actually read any of this, but it's out there.  

Here's life on another day, doing what it always does if I choose to look at it.  Is it coincidence that one truly unknown family member dies and another family is brought together?  I actually think it is, but it's a nice coincidence.  It lets you know that every usually does come full circle in one way or another.  That's just how life works, it just doesn't always explain itself so quickly.  I don't know how other people would have looked at the whole situation.  Maybe none of it is any big deal.  Maybe not a big deal to anyone but me.  All I know is that I can only see things through my eyes and my only goal is to express that to anybody that will listen.  

So, who's listening?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

My Dirty Shed

I'm sitting in my garage, it's raining outside. Been confined to these four walls all day, cleaning you see. I've done two oil changes and two brake jobs and haven't cleaned up the mess from any of them. Just got done changing my wife's brakes yesterday and i couldn't find any of my shit, was limited on space, and just crap everywhere. It needed to be cleaned. Woke up early this morning and fired up the heater, which i am now quite tired of listening to. It's loud. Turning it on and off i get a little bit of peace. I'm telling you, having things clean and in their place is a beautiful thing. I'm not usually a slob like this, i have to have things in their place. It may be the ocd in me.

One thing i do realize is that I've obtained a lot of shit. 6 years ago I had a lawn mower in it and a shovel. That's about it. Now I've got tools up the ass. Yard tools, mechanics tools, carpentry tools, you name it. It's odd because i never would have imagined myself doing any of these things. I've always been timid about doing things, especially things I've never done before. My old man wouldn't let me touch shit, and he's a jack of all trades. He wouldn't show me anything. It's a damn shame really. But somewhere in the mix i gave in to the idea that i can do things. It's just stuff and can't really be hurt. So, I've taught myself to do a lot of things. I can hang doors and install wooden floors. I can change brakes on the car as well as other things. I can fix bicycles and popped tires. And i never figured I'd do any of that. Here in my mess of a garage i came to the realization that I'm quite capable of doing a lot. I don't credit myself enough.

Yea, big deal, Cracker cleaned his garage. True. But in the process of cleaning this garage i have grown to know myself better. The why of the things i do and the how of the things i am going to do yet. Growing to know yourself and truly understanding it is a long drawn out process. Sometimes i forget I'm still in a stage of growth and change and it becomes hard to see the bigger picture. It's very easy to get caught in a rut and think that THIS is who you are. That you're not going to change and things will stay the same forever. It doesn't work like that whether you're aware or not. You can stand still and everything around you will indeed change over time. Do i want to be a part of that or do i want to let my surroundings do it for me?

It's a simple question, really.

My garage is in order and all my stuff placed in it neatly. Hell, i even swept it out. But the only thing i really gained today was insight. When I'm moving, whether it be my hands or my feet, those wheels in my mind start turning. Just the act of "doing" gets the mind flowing again. I remember the instant this idea had come to me. I was 20 years old, marching down the side of a road with a 60lb. rucksack and an M16 in my hands...go figure. It was at the moment that i became aware of the me that was doing the thinking. For the first time i was able to focus and observe what i was thinking. I mean, when you're in those kinds of conditions you only have two things to do....move your feet and think. I spent a lot of time getting to know myself and what drives me during those 8 weeks. Something i can't forget. I've lost touch with that a little bit in my new world of technology and kids. And here i am, sitting in my quiet, clean garage. I needed this space more than anyone can realize. I see hours and words here in the near future. Not to neglect the noisy things in my life, but to have a place to go and be, and do it well.

And, well, here i be.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

From The Chair

I have finally made my way to the basement, knocked the dust off the old PC, and sat in my "thinking chair" which seems to need a bit of oil.  Its been quite a while, really.  With smartphones and laptops who needs the inconvenience of walking down a couple of stairs to sit in their favorite chair?  Well, apparently I do.  I have sat right here in this chair for so very many many hours, and have written from it so very many words.  It's like making contact with a long lost friend, I'm telling you.

Here recently I've come to realize that part of my inspiration problem is due to a lack of solitude.  Technology is all well, but I've let it take away from me the one thing that truly helps me think.  I mean, wherever I go I am connected.  It has made me produce less quality thoughts, I am sure.  I am not a great talker, never have been.  I do best when I've got time to think.  While it has been cool to catch a lot of those fleeting thoughts that come and go, I sure do miss the realizations that happen when you've got quiet in which to think.  Sitting in front of a tv expecting to peck something out on my phone that's actually worthwhile is quite an insane thought.  At least to me, it is.  Its been a pleasure to be hardwired to the internet wherever I may go....from the wide of lands and mountain rages of Yellowstone National Park, right on up to a bathroom stall.  I'm guilty, yes.  Although, I'd have to say some of my most prized thinking has been done there.  I can think of no other place that will guarantee as much solitude.  And solitude is what I need.

Sitting here in this chair has revitalized some of my creative energy.  It is rather inspiring, I have to admit.  When I think about the changes and realizations I've made over the last 8 or 10 years I do have to say that some of the best have happened while sitting in this spot.  And it's not so much about the place in which I sit as it is about what I'm doing while I'm sitting.  I'm sure I can find a million other places in this world which will offer me some of the greatest inspiration and solitude one can get.  But at the moment, I don't have that and it's quite alright.  Writing, writing, writing no matter if I wanted to or not, I have produced words whose count does astonish me.  All I have ever wanted to do is write.  I can think of nothing I enjoy better than when I am feeling absolutely inspired and the words just flow through my fingers so quickly that one might think they were doing the thinking.  Yea, that's a great feeling.  And that is not to say that the number of words is the accomplishment.  Some of the best things worth saying can be done so in a matter of a few words.  The point is that I found so many thoughts to be worth writing.  From the wireless waves of tech I never could have created such a volume.  Would not have been possible.

Why do I find this to be worth writing about?  Because it is a part of me in which I've neglected to nourish for a number of years now and it has taken its toll.  Through all that I've learned I find that I still need to learn more.  I have spent the last couple years wanting to beat my head against a wall because I couldn't buy an original thought.  I haven't challenged myself to get off my ass and do something about it and what it gave me were some of the worst years in my recent history.  I guess if one were to stop feeding themselves their life would go to shit rather quickly.  Most people "out" there don't get it.  They concern themselves with everything beyond their own control and hardly knows what lies underneath.  I trust that almost anyone who finds this and has read this far does get it.  They are probably searching for the same truths in life that I am.  How can one know a truth about anything beyond the tips of their fingers if they don't even know their own self first?  And my true goal in all that I read, write, see and hear is to have a better understanding of the one person that I can understand.  Life may not be perfect, and I may not be the best at anything I do, but there is one thing I do know.  I know myself, and I know my thoughts.  This is quite an accomplishment considering most media out there is trying to steal both right out from under you.

What do you know about yourself?  What is it that has pushed you far in any endeavor you have taken on?  What has brought you here?